On 1 March, it was exactly 70 years ago that Jan Oskam began trading fruit and vegetables. That was in the picturesque Dutch village of Harmelen. At the same time, he employed his first and later loyal employee, Theo Goes. Theo mostly worked in the field.
In 1959, construction started on this trader's first cold storage facility. That building, at 2 Europaweg in Vleuten, is, to this day, considered Jan Oskam's headquarters. This refrigerated warehouse and the nearby orchards became the company's base of operations.
Jan Oskam's primary business was commission trade at different fruit and vegetable auctions in and around Utrecht. In 1965, the company began exporting to France, Belgium, and Germany. Germany was a major client and net importer. And, with the Ruhr area just two hours away, an easy drive. The company's focus eventually shifted to that country.
Nowadays, this Dutch trading firm does business throughout Europe. It's been internationalizing especially rapidly since 1990. "Oskam Sr. would've been proud of what the family's second generation has built. That's under Kees Oskam's leadership," a company spokesperson says.
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